Cancer drug treats MS Scientists have made a dramatic leap forward in the treatment of multiple sclerosis with the discovery of a drug that not only halts the neurological disease but can also reverse it. But it needs to be given early on, before scarring and nerve death has occurred, say the results of a treatment trial published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The drug, alemtuzumab, is an established treatment for leukaemia and may also be effective in other conditions. Further studies are under way into its use in autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, in which the immune system attacks itself, and in transplant surgery, The Independent reports. Natural antibiotics Three naturally occurring antibiotics show promise in treating drug-resistant tuberculosis and other diseases, amid growing concerns that traditional drugs are losing their potency, say Rutgers University researchers. Myxopyronin, corallopyronin and ripostatin stop bacteria making proteins, thereby killing them. The new antibiotics should also significantly reduce treatment times, which can be as long as six months. About 25 per cent of all deaths worldwide are due to disease carried by bacteria, many of which are increasingly resistant to antibiotics, AFP reports. Disinfectants alert Improper use of hospital disinfectants may make bacteria more resistant, warn researchers from the US Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centre who conducted tests on the potentially fatal Staphylococcus aureus (golden staph). Bacteria that survived low doses of a range of so-called biocides mutated into strains that more effectively baffled toxins. Repeated exposure to low doses may result in complete immunity to biocides, healthday.com reports. Aerobics for a longer life Regular aerobic exercise can 'reliably reverse' age-related mental decline, say two US researchers based on a review of published studies. In older people with or without signs of dementia, regular moderate physical activity (enough to make them breathless) not only boosts the speed and sharpness of thought but also the volume of brain tissue and the way the brain functions, Reuters reports. 'We can safely argue that an active lifestyle ... will likely improve cognitive and brain function, and reverse the neural decay frequently observed in older adults,' say Arthur Kramer and Kirk Erickson from the University of Illinois. Bee Gees hit perfect for CPR Stayin' Alive, a disco hit from 1977, helps people administering cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to maintain almost the ideal number of chest compressions per minute, say University of Illinois researchers. The Bee Gees hit from the movie Saturday Night Fever is based on 103 beats per minute, says team leader David Matlock; the American Heart Association recommends 100 chest compressions per minute for emergency CPR, which can triple cardiac arrest survival rates. Doctors and students who sang the song to themselves while giving CPR delivered 113 compressions per minute on average - more being better than fewer, AP reports. Matlock says a Queen song has a similarly high beat rate. However, Another One Bites the Dust 'didn't seem quite as appropriate'. Mobile phone rash British, Canadian and US doctors are warning of a rash of so-called mobile phone dermatitis, triggered by sensitivity to nickel in some devices. Nickel allergy is common, and the British Association of Dermatologists says some people may develop a rash on their cheeks or ears if they spend a lot of time on their mobiles, or even on their fingertips if they SMS a lot. Researchers at Brown University in the US earlier this year found that 10 out of 22 wireless communication devices tested contained nickel, WebMD reports.